As a technologist, I got into this field because I love all things computing. So, it’s strange, but somewhat rewarding to decide to specialize a bit more. I don’t think I could ever pick one thing and stick with it forever, but more of building a breadth of knowledge in a specific subject. The first step toward that being taking my AWS Machine Learning Specialty exam in the next 2 months or so.
Which leads me to my old arch-nemesis. Without going in to too much personal detail, Math and I have always had a hate-hate relationship: I hated Math and Math hated me. This is not a particularly uncommon story, but how unfortunate for the young technologist.
Fast forward a few years after my first College attempt, I find myself realizing my greatest asset is my stubbornness. I also find myself in an industry increasingly reliant on developer knowledge that I’ve somewhat remained at the edges of for my whole career until the last year or so.
It’s not that I disliked development, indeed I find it challenging and rewarding at the same time. For someone who grew up taking apart and piecing together the family Packard Bell to see how it all worked, this would seem a logical progression.
So, what does a stubborn 30-something do that an insecure 20-something would never have fathomed? Convince myself that I can do the Math, go back to school for a math heavy degree (Computer Science), and dive head-first in to my greatest fear.
The question remains then, why? Why do this when you have a solid career and are approaching your 40’s? My answer: I’ve found the more I keep myself in somewhat challenging and uncomfortable positions, the more I grow as a person but also intellectually. What better way to remove the enormous chip on my shoulder than dive into a Math heavy degree, weaponizing my stubbornness, righting the wrongs of the past.
What’s your point?
Math and I, we’re friends now. We’ve put the past behind us and in our advancing age, realize we have a lot more in common than we did in those halcyon days of my youth.
I’m also going to waste the opportunity to insert a great metaphor here. I’m nearly done with my CS degree, eagerly looking forward to getting a master’s degree, and diving headfirst into the Machine Learning and AI space.
The insecure, Math-phobic wannabe music journalist of my 20’s would never have believed this, nearly assured that I would be living alone, in a remote area of PA, installing new Linux distros.
How wrong we can be when we try to predict the future or, perhaps, let our past dictate our future.